Millions of jobless left frightened about their future as $600 federal payment expires Friday

CHICAGO (WLS) -- Roushaunda Williams said it could be only a matter of time before she is living on the street without the enhanced federal coronavirus unemployment relief to help her make ends meet.

"I have asked my friends, my support system, as I as a grown woman working for 35 years if I can sleep on their couch," Williams said.

Aileen Dimery, is an unemployed stagehand who was laid off in March. She is among the millions of jobless people left frightened about their future.

"That leaves me with nothing," Dimery said.

RELATED: Millions set to lose $600 unemployment boost today as lawmakers spar over new stimulus bill

Congress remains deadlocked over coronavirus relief as Illinois unemployment claims have pushed past 1.5 million. According to Democratic Senator Dick Durbin, 814,000 people have claimed jobless benefits since July 11.

"Many of these people are struggling. Even with the $600 federal payment which expires today," Durbin said Friday.

Many Republican lawmakers support reducing the emergency aid to $200 a week.

Some community groups that feed the hungry said that while lawmakers remain divided, everyday people will suffer.

"If that money gets cut, it puts a tremendous burden on our families, our communities and on us to continue to do what we do," Justin Blake said.

The coalition to lift the ban on rent control wants the moratorium on evictions extended.

"It is demoralizing. It is humiliating. I would have never thought I would be in this predicament right now," Williams said.
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